Our cars: Hyundai Santa Fe - June

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  • Santa Fe seems to have survived its high-speed encounter with some debris

    Santa Fe seems to have survived its high-speed encounter with some debris

  • Santa Fe performed faultlessly as a load-lugger when Will had to transport a large flat-pack item

    Santa Fe performed faultlessly as a load-lugger when Will had to transport a large flat-pack item

  • Will thinks the Santa Fe looks great, but the kick in the waistline hampers rear visibility

    Will thinks the Santa Fe looks great, but the kick in the waistline hampers rear visibility

  • Santa Fe's boot is so big that it makes loading or retrieving items from the rear tricky for shorter people

    Santa Fe's boot is so big that it makes loading or retrieving items from the rear tricky for shorter people

  • Auto hold function on our Santa Fe's gearbox makes traffic jams far less frustrating

    Auto hold function on our Santa Fe's gearbox makes traffic jams far less frustrating

  • Our Santa Fe's rear nearside door refused to open - thankfully only for a few days, though

    Our Santa Fe's rear nearside door refused to open - thankfully only for a few days, though

  • Hyundai has been in for its first, free, check at the dealer

    Hyundai has been in for its first, free, check at the dealer

  • Will was glad to have the comfort and warmth of the Santa Fe after the Caterham failed to proceed

    Will was glad to have the comfort and warmth of the Santa Fe after the Caterham failed to proceed

  • The Santa Fe has been proving its abilities as a load-lugger

    The Santa Fe has been proving its abilities as a load-lugger

  • If the key's in your pocket, the Santa Fe's mirrors unfold and puddle lights illuminate as you approach

    If the key's in your pocket, the Santa Fe's mirrors unfold and puddle lights illuminate as you approach

  • Will can't get perfectly comfortable in the Santa Fe as the seat base seems to makes his thighs ache

    Will can't get perfectly comfortable in the Santa Fe as the seat base seems to makes his thighs ache

  • Playing 'I spy' through the panoramic roof is a great way to keep children entertained and occupied

    Playing 'I spy' through the panoramic roof is a great way to keep children entertained and occupied

  • The Hyundai Santa Fe is the latest arrival on the What Car? long term test fleet

    The Hyundai Santa Fe is the latest arrival on the What Car? long term test fleet

  • Sunroof rattle is spoiling Will's hunt for fresh air

    Sunroof rattle is spoiling Will's hunt for fresh air

  • Prefer not to have voice sat-nav guidance? You need to do this for every journey

    Prefer not to have voice sat-nav guidance? You need to do this for every journey

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Hyundai Santa Fe 2.2 CRDi Premium SE 4WD

Read the full Hyundai Santa Fe review

Week ending June 19
Mileage 18,800
Driven this week 134

The Santa Fe has officially left the What Car? car park. There are several things about it that I am really going to miss - it was fantastically practical and I was very fond of its looks, for starters.

I'm not the only one who will miss it either - it was also regularly pressed into service when it came to transporting What Car? staffers with family or load-lugging needs.

It wasn't all totally plain sailing though, so keep an eye open for my final report on life with the Santa Fe in the coming weeks.

By Will Williams
Neil.Williams@whatcar.com

Week ending June 12
Mileage 18,626
Driven this week 200

Unfortunately the Santa Fe has been in the wars recently, and just before it returns to Hyundai, too!

I was on my way to a photoshoot in Brighton via the M23 and someone's exhaust had just fallen off and was still sitting in the outside lane. I'd seen it and thought I'd lined up to avoid hitting it, but it must still have been moving because the Santa Fe's nearside wheels crashed over it at 70mph, creating a massive plume of exhaust/silencer wadding – the resulting cloud made it look like I'd run over a large mob of emus.

A loud bang also echoed around the cabin and the tyres seemed to vibrate a little and create a bit more rumble than usual, but they appeared okay when I inspected them later. There were no bulges or cracked wheels, either. The tyre pressures have remained fine, but I'll need to get the tracking checked because the steering wheel needs to be held slightly off centre to travel in a straight line.

By Will Willams
Neil.Williams@whatcar.com


Week ending June 5

Mileage 18,426
Driven this week 226

This week I borrowed the Santa Fe for a quick six-up dash down the A3 from Esher to Southsea.

We loaded two Pearsons in the rearmost seats, two in the middle and two in the front, and all approved of the interior: its comfort, its adjustable leather seats, and most of all its space – acres of it.

Legging it for the coast, we covered our 52 miles in a respectable 45 minutes. Only the ease with which this car emptied its fuel tank caused us some dismay – I found it difficult to get the instant display on the dash to even reach the 25mpg mark, let alone hover above it!

However, the driver has a good view, and a reasonable driving position. It put me in mind of a sort of cut-price XC90 – the engine is a little gruff low down, but fine at a cruise, and the driving experience is pleasant, if slightly detached.

Only the high rear window line, kicking up fashionably about its flanks, caused us a problem, making the rearmost seats feel, despite actually offering more than enough leg and headroom, slightly claustrophobic.

Access to those seats was also a problem: flipping forward the single passenger-side seat was easy enough, and the whole assembly slides forwards to ease entry, but the gap left was still too tight even for a child – an adult would really struggle.

To overcome this, and because they got bored with waiting for the middle-row passengers to get out before they could, my daughters took to climbing out of the rear tailgate, which turned out to be easier and quicker for them anyway.

By Mark Pearson
Mark.Pearson@whatcar.com

 

Our cars: Hyundai Santa Fe - May

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